Wilsonville girls unable to repeat against La Salle
The first time Wilsonville's girls' basketball team met up with the Falcons, they snapped La Salle Prep's legendary streak when won 71-59 on Tuesday, Jan. 15. The second time around, the top two teams in the Northwest Oregon Conference (NWOC) put on yet another show, this time with La Salle edging Wilsonville 55-50. The contest took place in front of a raucous Wilsonville crowd.
"The atmosphere was great and the best I've seen it in four years," Wilsonville head coach Justin Duke said. "We were fortunate to be able to host a lot of our Youth teams last night and felt their energy and excitement. The program is really growing to new heights and it was great to see the level of engagement between our high school players and the youth players even after a tough loss."
Wilsonville had been having its way with league foes not named La Salle. When push came to shove, the team was unable to finish the game strong enough to get the win. The final quarter was where La Salle took over, according to Duke.
"Unfortunately, we haven't been challenged often in our league games to this point so it's been over a month and a half since we've had a game within 10 points," Duke said. "I loved the physical nature of the game and how the officials let it play out. We didn't quite adjust as well as we would have hoped."
Despite the tough loss, the team showed its resolve in the locker room. Gearing up for the next league encounter against Scappoose (1-9 in NWOC play, 2-17 overall) on Friday, Feb. 15, the Wildcats are ready to get back to the grindstone.
"The team responded to the loss as well as they could have," Duke said. "We didn't have a bunch of tears in the locker room but more a sense of determination to get back in the gym and prepare ourselves for the next opportunity we get to play a team of their caliber."
"When you face high-level teams every detail matters," Duke continued. "There wasn't one glaring weakness in the game that we have to fix but a lot of small details that make all the difference in a game like that. The great thing for us is that we don't need anybody to grow 6 inches between now and the layoffs. All of the opportunities we have to correct our mistakes are things we're aware of and capable of doing over the next few weeks."
Sophomore Emilia Bishop led the way with 24 points, followed by sophomore Sydney Burns with 12 points, senior Cydney Gutridge with 9 points, junior Kayla Hieb with 3, and senior Hannah McKinney with 2.